Recruiting with (& without) an Accent!
It didn’t do Cheryl Cole any harm……..
If we start by saying I’m a Geordie. I talk like a Geordie & can’t say ‘phone’ in that posh way that everyone else does. I’m not quite as Geordie as Cheryl – but I’ve an indentifiable Geordieness – & it’s innately in my personality & not just my in voice – bear with me! I don’t want to lose my accent & in fact I love people’s reaction to it & an odd spin off is that it’s made me a character that clients & candidate remember though years have gone by. Having a recognisable name & voice have been unexpectedly good business positives.
I recruit mainly in Chester & Liverpool & this week I took a position from a Liverpool client who asked for a candidate with ‘no scouse accent’ & unusually for me…I was dumbstruck. And so .. it got me thinking. Do I judge other accents? Would I prefer to have the phone answered by a non identifiable voice? Do I immediately think differently about the person on the other end of the phone if they talk ‘scouse’ & what kind of discrimination is it? If indeed it is discrimination? What if I’d arrived in Manchester after Uni & my first employer had said ‘no Geordies – we want Mancs’…where would that have left me?
Fact is – having an accent POSITIVELY added bottom line cash to the 3 corporate employers I previously worked for. During ‘sales’ calls I found that people got their ‘hooks’ into me & showed a basic interest in me & that grew into being more agreeable about the suggestion of a face to face meeting & eventually – business. People wanted to hear why I was sat in Liverpool or Chester when my accent made them think of windswept coasts, Geordie ladies on a Friday night wearing sandals in the winter & Alan flipping Shearer (GOD!)
So why on earth would this client NOT want an accent? Its lovely to have a familiar or identifiable voice at the other end of the phone: doesn’t it tick both boxes? Non Liverpudlians can identify where they’re ringing & born Scousers would feel immediate warmth as they’re talking to ‘one of their own’. Don’t discount regional accents. Clients & recruiters must simply anchor their thoughts on can that chosen candidate DO the job? In my experience, accents can open doors in the least expected way. Admittedly a Liverpool accent in Liverpool isn’t going to allow the ‘hook’ I’ve mentioned to develop during communication but my thoughts are that this client wants people to have no accent as its not locals that he’ll be ringing….so revert to above!
And…interviews take place next week with scousers & non scousers! And the funniest thing is….yes you guessed it – the client’s got a Scouse accent too!
I’m Roseanne Stockton & I successfully run Nu-Recruit Career Consultants – I place permanent candidates of the very best caliber into great local employers & jobs in Liverpool, Chester & Manchester. In a no-fuss, no nonsense way. And I love what I do.
Call me if you think my 19 years of experience will help you get the best candidate for your job! And please feel free comment on my Blog….Why Aye Pet Lambs!